Vegans love decadent desserts as much as the next sweet-tooth sufferer. And with more and more vegetarian- and vegan-friendly restaurants popping up all over, bakeries specializing in sweet endings were bound to follow. Some bakeries are exclusively vegan, including the wildly popular celeb hotspot Babycakes, with outlets in New York City and Los Angeles, while a growing number of conventional bakeries, including L.A.’s Jamaica’s Cakes (where pop singer Pink got a vegan cake for her daughter’s first birthday), offer a large selection of vegan options. Whether you are in search of a luscious peanut butter bomb or a simply divine doughnut, I’ve compiled a list of 10 vegan bakeries that deliver the vegan good(ie)s:
The brainchild of 15-year-old baker and entrepreneur Clara Polito, Clara’s Cakes online bakery offers a wide variety of cupcakes, cookies, brownies, Rice Krispies treats, and hand-held mini-pies, some of which could only come from the imagination of a teenager. Oreo-stuffed chocolate-chip cookies, anyone?
In a town that is virtually overrun with vegan bakeries, including Dovetail Bakery, Black Sheep Bakery, Voodoo Donuts, Monkey Wrench Vegan Bakery, Petunia’s Pies & Pastries, and Sweetpea Baking Co., Back to Eden stands out for its mix of sweet and savory baked goods as well as its vegan soft-serve and hand-dipped ice cream, which can be whipped up into banana splits, shakes, and cones.
It may be called a bakery, but you can get a square meal here, including soups, sandwiches, crusty bread, and a Sunday brunch that features biscuits and gravy, pancakes, and scrambled tofu, all 100 percent vegan, natch. Be sure to save room for pain au chocolat, orange rolls, zucchini bread, almond–poppy seed muffins, or an ooey-gooey-chewy brownie.
Vegan baker extraordinaire Kristen Davenport produces mouthwatering cupcakes, layer cakes, pies, and other confections out of a food truck that just opened this spring but already has a loyal and growing following (and I mean literally growing — one fan admits to having gained about 5 pounds by indulging in a few too many raspberry blackout cupcakes).
Located in a converted century-old house, Mud Pie Bakery offers locally roasted coffee with your choice of soy, coconut, almond, or hemp milk and a rotating smorgasbord of vegan baked goods, including “Twixy” bars, pumpkin muffins, chocolate “Mostess” cupcakes, lemon-iced coconut bundt cake, and the fan-favorite cocoanutz bar, which is composed of a graham cracker crust topped with shredded coconut and melted chocolate and sprinkled with chopped nuts.
Vegan? Check. Organic? Check. Fair trade? Check. Gluten-free? Check. All that and a mind-boggling array of cupcakes, cookies, pies, cheesecakes, pastries, muffins, and even faux Twinkies and other snack cakes is enough to convince any sweets fan that Salt Lake City truly is the promised land.
The country music capital isn’t just famous for its twang — it’s also famous for Karina Khan’s treats. Her Coconut Almond Joy cake, peanut butter moon bars, orange creamsicle cupcakes, white chocolate–chip “cheezcake,” flying Elvis cake, and other vegan delights have been available at The Wild Cow Vegetarian Restaurant in Nashville for a couple of years, and they’ve proved so popular that she’ll soon be opening her own bakery and café. Lucky, lucky Nashvillians.
Making Columbus world-famous for vegan deliciousness, Pattycake offers mouthwatering offerings like strawberry mini raw cheesecakes, giant snickerdoodle cookies, buckeye bars, and whoopie pies in a variety of flavors and it’s all dairy-, egg-, and gluten-free.
Just try visiting the Vegan Treats website and not having your mouth start watering within five seconds — I dare ya! Visions of coconut custard doughnuts, caramel petits fours, brownie chunk cheesecakes, peanut butter bombs, and chocolate-encased strawberry shortcakes will dance through your head. It’s enough to make you immediately want to book a flight to Pennsylvania’s Moravian country.
Sticky Fingers’ cupcakes are the best. Just ask the judges on Cupcake Wars, where the Sticky Fingers bakers have twice walked home the winners. Other specialties include cookies, pastries, and cakes, including made-to-order wedding cakes. Sticky Fingers also offers lunch and brunch items like breakfast burritos, French toast, biscuits and gravy, veggie chili, and mock-tuna melts.
This list doesn’t even begin to scratch the from-scratch surface. If you’re looking for vegan goodies in your neck of the woods, chances are there’s either an online or a brick-and-mortar bakery that can satisfy your craving. Even if there aren’t any vegan items on the menu, ask! Many bakeries are happy to make vegan cakes, cookies, and pies on request.
For more information, visit PETA.org.
Michelle Kretzer learned about factory farming while pursuing a degree in Journalism at the University of Kentucky. She immediately stopped eating meat and dedicated herself to the cause of animal rights. When she is not writing for PETA, Michelle enjoys doting on her German shepherd mix, Hannah, traveling, collecting Beatles memorabilia, and finding great cruelty-free shoes and bags.